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Golf Course Architecture / Re: $10M & Change
« Last post by John Kirk on Today at 07:02:48 PM »

Business considerations provide the entire context for architecture.  I do not think you can meaningfully think about architecture without considering why the course was built in the first place and the financial pressures that impact whether the course survives or thrives.

I can meaningfully play a golf course, and evaluate its architecture, without once considering any financial pressures that course may be having.  Why would I have to consider "why the course was built in the first place"?  Why should I care?

Damned near fell out of my chair.  I never hoped to reach John Kirk- he exists in a totally different dimension- but it looks like someone I hadn't expected might be taking notice.  Right on!  As much as some would like, you can't separate any capital intensive endeavor from business, economics and finance.  Blow up free enterprise in pursuit of an egalitarian utopia and the fate of golf will be sealed.

I see nothing untoward about this thread.  My bet is that the owner of Wolf Point would be delighted to entertain a serious offer from this august group.

As to discussion on this site being the kiss of death for clubs on the margin, I've worked on many distressed properties in my real estate career and keeping it hush-hush was never a strategy.  In most cases, providing maximum exposure is helpful in finding the needle-in-a-haystack buyer.  I would like to see WP survive and thrive.  This would likely require a very large national membership made up of golf architecture aficionados and sportsmen.  Are we it?     

Here I was thinking that the reason for this site is frank commentary of golf architecture.  I didn't realize we were a loosely affiliated business group with an interest in acquiring golf courses.

Sure, the discussion of architecture includes the costs to build and maintain a golf course.  We should be discussing (or in my case, reading the experts discussing) how to design golf courses efficiently and inexpensively.  That's a key aspect of the overall discussion.

Still, as a player/evaluator, why should I care about that?  No matter the cost, the course is either good to play, or it is not.  My understanding of the phrase frank commentary on golf course architecture suggests that we be open and honest in our opinions about whether or not some feature of a golf course is desirable, and why.  And make no mistake about it — golf course evaluation ultimately resides with the consumer (player), and not the developer.  They make 'em and we decide whether they are good or not. 

Tom Doak says in reply #39:
 "The problem that arises is that there are many struggling clubs in America, but nominating one here might imply its finances are iffy, which could be the kiss of death for a place.  (Or even drive down the sale price, like spreading false rumors on Wall Street in an insider trading scam.)  That was always a subtext of the Ballyneal v Dismal River discussions years ago, and one reason they were so nasty."

Is Tom suggesting that we should refrain from frank commentary on golf course architecture, because financially challenged clubs may be affected by influential or persuasive analysis?

Negative commentary about a club's finances, poor service, low membership, or any other business problems facing a club should be avoided.  For one thing, they are not "frank commentary on golf course architecture".

I have more to say about this subject.  It might make a worthwhile thread.  The days of "frank commentary of golf architecture" are over, as business interests work to stifle the practice.  GCA is no longer the young upstart espousing traditional golf course values against a tide of wasteful and illogical design practices.  The architects that GCA champions comprise the core group that builds a majority of high-profile courses worldwide.  GCA is now part of the industry, and inseparable from the business interests around it.  Negative commentary about golf architecture should be restricted to general arguments, and not directed at individual projects.  Positive thoughts of favored golf courses should be shared liberally.

Lou, your political comments are unnecessary.  That last "liberally" was for you.
In an era of overused superalitives, we may forget just how great Miller was as a player. There are exactly two active players who have won more PGA events than Miller. Tiger and Phil.

I will bet even money that no active player will get to 25 wins. And it is not about fields. Go back to watch the 1975 Masters.

I remember the 63 like it was yesterday because it was magical.

We really do take too much for granted today.


Bumping my own thread to raise odds to 3-1 that no active player will get to 25 wins.

The 2020's will be a busy decade for Olympic. US Women's Open in 2021. US Am in 2025. PGA in 2028.
Golf Course Architecture / Re: How slow can they go?
« Last post by Mike Sweeney on Today at 06:46:57 PM »

Play was quite fast at PV for a while thereafter!


Great story and it is that easy for the great clubs and on the PGA Tour.
Cherry Hills is like 7700 yards. Even at altitude it can handle match play.
Golf Course Architecture / Re: How slow can they go?
« Last post by Jim Nugent on Today at 05:43:32 PM »
Interesting Fried Egg podcast with Geoff Ogilvy with much time spent on this topic.

Did Geoff say anything about a shot clock?  That still seems like a quick, effective, low-cost solution.  Penalties must be worked out, but some combination of warnings and extra strokes, along with a few timeouts per round, could do the trick. 

Cherry Hills surprises me most of that list, because of its (short) length.  Will they have to turn the fairways into bowling alleys, and let the rough grow, to keep it challenging -- sort of like what they did to Merion at the U.S. Open?  Or can they stretch the course out by moving tees back? 
Golf Course Architecture / Re: Australia courses - my take
« Last post by Matthew Mollica on Today at 05:04:08 PM »
I had a discussion a few years ago with a very good player (a woman) who thought Royal Melbourne West was horribly overrated.  I’d never heard anyone take that position before, so I asked why, and it was because she couldn’t see her tee shot land on so many holes - not just the up and over on 4, but the finicky things like not being able to see clearly over the bunker on 2W or 12W or 18W.

Interesting isn’t it.

I have a friend who loves the sense of anticipation and drama of seeing his ball bounce on the far side of the drive hazards on 2W, 4W, 6W, 12W. Even though the landing area is not as clearly visible as your described female player may wish, my friend thinks the visualisation of the bounce and confirmation of the carry is a great asset. Give the player thrills, as Alister would say...

Golf Course Architecture / US Amateur venues announced through 2026
« Last post by Matthew Rose on Today at 04:56:57 PM »
LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (Feb. 21, 2019) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced sites for six U.S. Amateur Championships, from 2021 through 2026. Oakmont (Pa.) Country Club will host the U.S. Amateur in 2021 and will be followed by Ridgewood (N.J.) Country Club in 2022 and Cherry Hills Country Club, in Cherry Hills Village, Colo., in 2023. The 2024, 2025 and 2026 championships will be held at Hazeltine National Golf Club, in Chaska, Minn.; The Olympic Club, in San Francisco, Calif.; and Merion Golf Club, in Ardmore, Pa., respectively.

2021 Oakmont
2022 Ridgewood
2023 Cherry Hills
2024 Hazeltine
2025 Olympic
2026 Merion
The tree removal trend has obviously not reached Mexico yet!
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